Bacchus (n)- The Greek God of wine and merriment.
Bacchus (n)- a network of dedicated peer health educators and College students working together to promote health and wellness on college campuses.
Just to clear up any confusion anyone may have. This weekend I attended the Area 12 Regional Bacchus Conference. This conference brings together the schools of Area 12 (everywhere from Maryland to West Virginia) in order to continue education for students and professionals, alike, on the issue of health education and prevention on college campuses. I had never been to a Bacchus Conference before, but my new position as President of the Sexual Assault Branch afforded me the opportunity to attend.
I attended breakout sessions entitled: “Anchoring Your Leadership,” “Juggling College Life: How to Cup Your Balls,” and “Engaging Men in Conversations of Interpersonal Violence Prevention.” Needless to say, the conference was right up my alley.
However, there were some health educators there who were alarmingly less informed than many of my peers. In one breakout session, we completed an activity in which we developed a HIV spectrum of risk based on specific activities in which one can engage (anything from sex with a condom to kissing someone with HIV to needle sharing to sitting on the same toilet seat as someone with HIV). Some of the health educators believed that sitting on the same toilet seat as someone with HIV presented a greater risk than sex with a condom. This is both alarming and sad. We are living in 2012. We are among some of the brightest and innovative thinkers of all time. The theories and research surrounding health is phenomenal and it is so conducive to learning and education. However, at that moment, I felt like I was still in the 1980s and 90s.
Sometimes I wonder why it is so hard for people to drop their preconceived notions about any one topic in place for newer and more up to date knowledge. Maybe it’s an issue of pride, and maybe these people just don’t want to know anything different. Maybe they’re comfortable. It’s hard to respect comfortability in place of knowledge. I am trying though. I am trying to respect opinions different than my own (an extremely hard task for a 4’11”, Southern, opinionated, firecracker like myself).
“The unfolding of your words gives light; it imparts understanding to the simple.”
-Psalms 119: 130
I’m just trying to light the world.